Security service lawyer says it ‘regrets’ claims against Peter Morrison were not investigated
'MI5 warned the cabinet secretary in the 1980s about rumours that a minister had a “penchant for small boys” but did not inform the police or launch an investigation into the allegations, according to a member of the security services.
Giving evidence anonymously to the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse (IICSA), a lawyer with the security service apologised for it having taken a “narrow, security-related view” of the accusations against Sir Peter Morrison.
“With hindsight,” the lawyer, whose voice was heard via remote video link, said “it was a matter of deep regret” that MI5 had not cooperated with police or made inquiries into the activities of the former MP for Chester, who died in 1995.
The official said the security service did not investigate people merely because they had a public profile but only when there was reason to suspect they posed a threat to national security. Not all files were “adverse”, he added, saying that some might be opened if a person was targeted by a terrorist group or could be susceptible to approaches by a foreign intelligence organisation.
A letter from the then head of MI5, Sir Antony Duff, to Sir Robert Armstrong, the then cabinet secretary, that was sent in 1986 was read out to the inquiry. It said that stories about Morrison, who was then minister of state for trade and industry, “persist”.'
Read more: MI5 did not tell police of minister's ‘penchant for small boys’, inquiry hears
Former Blackburn MP Barbara Castle 'tried to smash Westminster paedo ring'
'THE late Baroness Barbara Castle drew up a list of 16 MPs allegedly involved in child sex abuse in the 1980s, an inquiry has heard,
Investigative journalist Don Hale claims he was handed a dossier by the former Blackburn MP about the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE).
The former editor of the Bury Messenger said it included a list of 16 MPs allegedly involved in paedophilia but was unable to remember a single name.
PIE advocated abolishing the age of consent for sexual activity and Mr Hale claimed the documents revealed many senior figures supported its aims.
Mr Hale was appearing before the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse heard.
He said in the summer of 1984, Baroness Castle handed him several sensitive documents to photocopy relating to parliamentary committee meetings discussing the PIE.
Mr Hale claimed all the documents was confiscated by officers from special branch as soon as he started trying to verify them.
The inquiry is examining allegations of historical sexual abuse by politicians and its cover-up.'
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